The Balloonatic with Buster Keaton. 1923. This Keaton filkm is already in the Archive but this is a better print and I have added a music track.
April 25, 2013
Inventive, surprising and endearing.
Buster Keaton was in full swing, coming up with more gags per minute than anyone would dare attempt these days. As he became more assured and the audiences grew, he came to develop the narrative more, to provide greater depth to the characters. This still feels like a series of one-off gags, mainly visual puns and acrobatic slapstick, but with some beautifully surreal images that elevate his work above his contemporaries (not bad for a balloon related reference). The female lead in this is Phylis Haver, and she has some fine scenes. She had been acting in movies since 1916 (born in 1899) and IMDb list this as her 57th movie (Buster's 34th movie). IMDb does not show them appearing together in any other movies.